Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Wind. Rain. Sun. Rain. Wind. Rain. Hail. Sun. Sleet. Rain. Wind. Rain. Sun. Rain. Hail.
We are having this sort of a day in Wickersham.
The humans are huddled inside against the elements, the goats are sheltering inside their shack, and I am longing for the freedom that I once enjoyed—the freedom to trot or tranter, unrestrained, across the sprawling breadth of my 3/4 acre pasture. The freedom to nose amidst the weedy roots for an as yet-unplucked morsel of delicious grass. The freedom to cavort alongside the neighbor's steer, and watch the heft and bovininity with which he gestures in reciprocal motion.
These freedoms will come again, but today I am cursed to the small confines of my sacrifice paddock. I am locked away from paradise because of my hooves . . . hooves of penetrating hardness, of solidity and unyielding strength. They are, next to my tremendous wit and generally good character, my greatest strength, but they are also like little jack-hammers on wet soil. They pulverize the tender skin of mother earth and leave her battered and bloody–er, muddy.
Such is the life of a grazing animal in the Pacific Northwest—we who were made by the great Spaghetti Monster to roam the dry prairie and to populate the arid steppes. Here, I live like a frog, croaking out my lonesome song from between the cattails.